By Adriana Pop, Associate Editor
RioCan Real Estate Investment Trust, Allied Properties Real Estate Investment Trust and Diamond Corp. have entered into an agreement to purchase the Globe & Mail Lands in Toronto for $136 million. The transaction is expected to close in mid-December 2012.
Situated in the city’s Downtown West area, the 6.47-acre property currently hosts The Globe & Mail Newspaper and includes 252,617 square feet of office space, as well as 579 parking spaces.
The acquisition will set the basis for a joint venture between RioCan, Allied and Diamond, with each of RioCan and Allied having an undivided 40 percent interest and Diamond having an undivided 20 percent interest.
The joint venture partners are planning to redevelop the site as a mixed-use retail, office and residential complex. Upon completion, RioCan will act as property manager for the retail component, while Allied will act as property manager for the office component.
“We are excited to acquire, with our partners, one of the largest underdeveloped contiguous parcels of land in downtown Toronto. On this size footprint, we believe that we can create a unique shopping and recreational complex as a center for the urban population that already exists and continues to grow in the immediate surrounding area,” Edward Sonshine, CEO of RioCan said in a prepared statement. “Overlaid with what will be I am sure, with our partners input, Toronto’s finest integrated office, residential and retail complex.”
Michael Emory, President and CEO of Allied added, “Not only does this joint venture highlight the importance of our ongoing collaboration with RioCan and Diamond, it affords us the opportunity to participate in a major redevelopment that will complement our current portfolio of nearly one million square feet at King & Spadina.”
“This is a unique opportunity to participate in city building at its finest, to create a lasting mixed use landmark of architectural and urban design excellence for the citizens of Toronto,” said Stephen Diamond, President of Diamond. “We are very happy to be partnering with two of Canada’s leading developers who share our commitment for innovation and quality.”
RioCan is Canada’s largest real estate investment trust, with ownership interests in a portfolio of 338 retail properties containing more than 80 million square feet. The company’s portfolio includes 12.4 million square feet in the United States, as well as 10 properties under development in Canada.
Allied Properties REIT is a leading owner, manager and developer of urban office environments in Canada’s major cities. The company is based in the Province of Ontario and its portfolio is located in the urban areas of Ville de Québec, Montréal, Ottawa, Toronto, Kitchener, Winnipeg, Calgary, Edmonton, Vancouver and Victoria.
Diamond is a Toronto-based land development company that focuses on the construction of high-quality residential and mixed use projects. The company also manages the Whitecastle New Urban Fund in Toronto and the more recently launched Whitecastle New Urban Fund 2.